Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Meatball Stew

Meatball Stew
It was one of those days when dinner was the last thing on my mind and the fridge was as bare as Mother Hubbard's cupboard. If I'd planned for it, I may have made my own meatballs from scratch, but it's real handy to have Italian-style meatballs in the freezer. The ones I buy are cocktail sized meatballs and there are about 120 in a bag. I separate them in Ziploc bags of 20 since there are usually only the two of us to cook for.

In our home, meals are eaten on time every day. Breakfast is the one exception, but lunch is always at noon and dinner at 6 p.m. It was already 5 in the evening with no time for much so I put on a cup of mung dal to boil, fried some cauliflower along with the tempering for a Mung Dal with Cauliflower dish. Then I raided the pantry for a can of Del Monte diced new potatoes so I wouldn't have to mess with or waste time scrubbing & peeling potatoes. Hard to believe, but I had dinner on the table in under an hour. The basmati rice took 18 minutes to cook in the microwave.

20 cocktail-sized Italian meatballs
1 (14 oz.) can diced new potatoes, drained
1 cup frozen peas
1 large onion, diced
1 large tomato, diced
1 Tbsp. ginger paste
1 Tbsp. garlic paste
2 tsp. tomato paste
1 tsp. Kashmiri mirch/chili powder/paprika
4 Tbsp. vegetable oil
2 cinnamon sticks
2 black, large cardamom
1 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp. black pepper corns
1 hot green chili, diced
1 cup chicken broth, simmering
salt to taste

  1. Heat oil over medium-high heat in a skillet and sputter fennel seeds, chili, cinnamon and cardamom.
  2. Stir-fry onions until translucent and add ginger & garlic pastes.
  3. Stir well, add tomato paste and simmer until oil resurfaces.
  4. Stir in paprika, tomatoes, potatoes and peppercorns, and cook until tomatoes break down.
  5. Add simmering chicken broth, meatballs and salt to taste.
  6. Lower heat to medium and simmer until gravy thickens and oil resurfaces.
  7. Top with peas, simmer for another 3 minutes and serve with rice or chapatis.

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